The effort involved in stealing 2,000 railroad ties stacked along tracks in Southern Oregon has stunned workers at local businesses, who say it takes them hours to move a few dozen of the 9-foot pieces of wood that can weigh up to 100 pounds each.
Ties are sold commercially for landscaping and fences.
The Grants Pass Daily Courier says the railroad replacement ties were stolen between October and April, the theft reported recently.
A Central Oregon and Pacific Railroad worker no ties were taken from the tracks themselves, so rail operations weren't affected.
Manager Tino Chavez at Farmer's Building Supply says he sells 800 to 1,000 ties annually. He told the newspaper: "Oh my goodness . it's a lot."